Mapex Armory Tomahawk Snare

BonsaiMagpie

Junior Member
I have spent ages and ages trying to tune my snare. Doing loads to get it to sound like the snare tuning examples on YouTube. I can tune my Mapex Armory toms and bass to sound great, and do get compliments for them on occasion. The snare has always annoyed me.

Finally have an idea to look up how my particular drum sounds tuned. It sounds like absolute dog shit. So much overtone, it sounds like a gate being opened at a haunted house. I feel less bad for using hydraulic heads and sky gel.
 

mikyok

Platinum Member
The Armory kit is one of the very best in its price range, there's been a couple of people on here that have said the tomahawk is a pig of a snare.

Is the kit still brand new as Mapex do a snare swap on the Armory snares, do a search for it.

Personally I don't use any stock snare with any kit, if you want all the brands to match head straight down the Black Panther route, they're great snares. Just find which one you like best. They're not overly expensive new and cheap second hand.
 

BonsaiMagpie

Junior Member
The Armory kit is one of the very best in its price range, there's been a couple of people on here that have said the tomahawk is a pig of a snare.

Is the kit still brand new as Mapex do a snare swap on the Armory snares, do a search for it.
I agree with that, for the money is a damn good kit. I've had it 4 years and as i got better and better at playing I've become less and less happy with the snare. Currently got an OK sound out of it, but holy hell, listening to the videos I've realised I was polishing a turd.

My 30th birthday present to myself is gonna be a Yamaha Hybrid Oak kit, but my 29th might be the snare. haha!
 

PorkPieGuy

Platinum Member
Nothing wrong with upgrading a snare. I've never been impressed with the sound of a Tomahawk snare. There's no shame in getting something else. You've given it a lot of your time and effort, so if you can't be happy with it for a long stretch then it's time to move on. It's funny how a great-sounding snare can actually make a good-sounding kit sound great.
 

cbphoto

Gold Member
Magpie, I know how you feel, and it's very frustrating.

I know nothing about the Mapex snare, but I bought a NOS Tama "Super" Aluminum snare (LAL145, same model number as the current "Dry" aluminum). It sounded great in the store, and since they were going out of business and the price was $100 less than street price, I went for it. I also naively thought it would sound crisper, and more open than the Dry Aluminum. It does, but with a ping in its sound that detracts from its overall sound.

First was to try different heads (Evans Genera Dry killed all overtones, but I want some overtones, just the good ones though). Then different wires. Then different hoops (brass mighty hoops and die cast). Finally, I went after the inner flange on the shell, trying to mute some of the dissonant ringing the shell was emanating. My first attempt (see photo) worked well, but I want to improve the dampening method (thick felt strips, maybe) and distribute the dampening in a couple areas around the shell.

Last night I was considering "sacrificing" the drum, similar to a surfboard sacrifice.
 

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ineedaclutch

Platinum Member
Magpie, I know how you feel, and it's very frustrating.

I know nothing about the Mapex snare, but I bought a NOS Tama "Super" Aluminum snare (LAL145, same model number as the current "Dry" aluminum). It sounded great in the store, and since they were going out of business and the price was $100 less than street price, I went for it. I also naively thought it would sound crisper, and more open than the Dry Aluminum. It does, but with a ping in its sound that detracts from its overall sound.

First was to try different heads (Evans Genera Dry killed all overtones, but I want some overtones, just the good ones though). Then different wires. Then different hoops (brass mighty hoops and die cast). Finally, I went after the inner flange on the shell, trying to mute some of the dissonant ringing the shell was emanating. My first attempt (see photo) worked well, but I want to improve the dampening method (thick felt strips, maybe) and distribute the dampening in a couple areas around the shell.

Last night I was considering "sacrificing" the drum, similar to a surfboard sacrifice.
Blink twice if you need rescue!
 

PorkPieGuy

Platinum Member
Magpie, I know how you feel, and it's very frustrating.

I know nothing about the Mapex snare, but I bought a NOS Tama "Super" Aluminum snare (LAL145, same model number as the current "Dry" aluminum). It sounded great in the store, and since they were going out of business and the price was $100 less than street price, I went for it. I also naively thought it would sound crisper, and more open than the Dry Aluminum. It does, but with a ping in its sound that detracts from its overall sound.

First was to try different heads (Evans Genera Dry killed all overtones, but I want some overtones, just the good ones though). Then different wires. Then different hoops (brass mighty hoops and die cast). Finally, I went after the inner flange on the shell, trying to mute some of the dissonant ringing the shell was emanating. My first attempt (see photo) worked well, but I want to improve the dampening method (thick felt strips, maybe) and distribute the dampening in a couple areas around the shell.

Last night I was considering "sacrificing" the drum, similar to a surfboard sacrifice.
Gah. Went through this with my Tama Rockstar steel snare.

About 3-4 new batter heads
New bottom head
New snare wires
All kinds of different muffling devices
Countless hours tuning and playing and trying to convince myself it sounded good.

If it didn't match my Tama Rockstar drum set (also sitting on the shelf), I'd take it out back and put it out of its misery.
 

moneydog59

Junior Member
I bought a new Armory, Photon Blue back in April, 2017 (my first 'new' kit!!) Still have it, love it, it's at one of the rehearsal spots for one of the bands I'm in...traded the Tomahawk for the maple walnut shelled Sabre with that trade in program. I have no complaints with the sound I get out of it at all.
 

BonsaiMagpie

Junior Member
I've yet to try the Questlove/Sounds like a drum under head taping method. But when I do I'll post back results here and on that thread.
 

IBitePrettyHard

Senior Member
From your description it sounds like a bearing edge or shell roundness issue. You should measure the shell for roundness.

When you put on a new head, have you noticed wrinkles after finger tightening the head? If so, you could simply turn the lug near the wrinkle until it's gone and only then tension each lug the same after that. This could negate any issue with a faulty bearing edge.
 

Winston_Wolf

Platinum Member
I have a Tomahawk snare too, and mine is terrible as well. I've never had so much trouble just doing a basic tune up on a drum before.

I agree it is almost certainly a problem with these drums not being perfectly round. On mine the snare beds are also formed very strangely too. I think Mapex only makes these snares on Monday mornings and Friday afternoons.
 

BonsaiMagpie

Junior Member
From your description it sounds like a bearing edge or shell roundness issue. You should measure the shell for roundness.

When you put on a new head, have you noticed wrinkles after finger tightening the head? If so, you could simply turn the lug near the wrinkle until it's gone and only then tension each lug the same after that. This could negate any issue with a faulty bearing edge.
I think you're right. I also know for certain that the lug sockets are not drilled perfectly, as finger tight means almost nothing on this drum. That can be right to the hoop on some lugs and about 5mm off on others. As Winston_Wolf says it's a terrible drum.
 
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